Thursday, Feb. 11th (Cat Ba Island Day 2)

  • Our whole crew, Dries from Belgium, Sarah from Canada, Cory, and I made it to breakfast by 8:30am.
  • I stayed at the hostel to take care of some computer work while everyone else made a run to the market to stock up for the day.
  • By 10am we hit the road for a hike through Cat Ba’s National Park.
  • On the way we stopped at Hospital Cave, an underground military complex that was used as a hospital and strategic headquarter during the Vietnam War.  There wasn’t much in the way of information, but it was still cool wandering the bare stone hallways and cavernous utility rooms.
  • A few kilometres down the road we encountered another set of caves: Trung Trang Grotto. 
  • The site had been shut down as a tourist attraction for some time by the looks of it, but we were still able to sneak in by climbing around two padlocked fences.
  • The cave structure was spectacular.  We used our cell phone lights as torches and the stalactites and stalagmites sparkled brilliantly in their beams.
  • Dries and I followed a path that led us deep into the stale air underground.  It was creepy being in such profound silence and blackness and we both felt relieved when we looped back to the entrance and fresh air.
  • Finally we made it to the National Park, and after some route confusion, ended up doing a steep 2 hour loop up to Ngu Lam peak.
  • The view from the peak was incredible in every direction, with hundreds of jagged green mountaintops as far as the eye could see.
  • We returned to the hostel and spent some time relaxing individually before meeting up for dinner and drinks at Green Mango restaurant.
  • It was Sarah’s last night with us so we continued the farewell celebration at Rose Bar before getting a late night Banh Mi and calling it a night.

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